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If you have a degree in what field is it? We met while attending Maryland Institute College of Art where Gina studied illustration, and Matt studied painting. Older Matt stuck around to wait for younger Gina to graduate and picked up a Masters in education while he was killing time.

Have you always been able to draw or was it a skill you learned in college? Naturally we were both artistically-inclined kids, but art school had some specific effects on how we look at art. Most of what we learned was less from specific lessons and more from the general environment. The pressure cooker of art school instilled us with a healthy sense of competition; it’s also where we learned to be hungry for new visual and conceptual influences and how to experiment to figure out how to make images.

What was your first paid assignment? Gina was working as an illustrator right out of school. It was a few years of sharing very small live/work spaces before we began working together on the same paintings. At first, the collaborations were a release from the dictates of illustration work but after we’d completed a few paintings, we lined up some art shows. We were happy for the shows to be the end result of the work, but then folks who had seen the shows requested illustrations in the vein of what we’d made. The first of these was Lamar Snowboards. Our initial introduction to art direction was more or less, “Could you repaint that square painting in snowboard proportions?” We’ve since learned to deal with more demanding requests, but it was nice to ease into things the way we did.

Which illustrator (or fine artist) do you most admire? Our tastes have always walked a line between pragmatism and mystery. Some artists seem too consciously esoteric and others way too easy. This has been a disposition we’ve shared since college when we were really drawn to Sigmar Polke, Ross Bleckner, Donald Baechler and Anselm Keifer. All of their work gave us something, but asked a little of us as well. This goes for our favorite illustrators too, many of whom we've been fortunate enough to count among our good friends.

What would you be doing if you weren’t an illustrator? We’ve both always drawn a lot of inspiration from textile designers—so perhaps that.

From where do your best ideas originate? Our best ideas come from a back-and-forth exchange. We each add something until an idea or look coalesces.

How do you overcome a creative block? One of the great things about working together is that you always have someone else to bump things forward when you’re feeling stumped.

In one word describe how you feel when beginning a new assignment? Caffeinated.

Do you have a personal philosophy? I don’t think we do, but if we did it would be something pertaining to hard work.

Do you have creative pursuits other than illustration? Raising our daughter, Juniper.

What music are you listening to right now? We’re listening to something trivial that we'll surely be tired of before this interview comes out.

What’s your favorite quote? While we’re not really into inspirational quotes, we do often try to find meaning in the little snippets we overhear from other people or phrases we pick out from radio conversations that are otherwise inaudible. A favorite amongst these is, “I'll do it because it’s what I’ve done before.”

Do you have any advice for people just entering the profession? Sure, surround yourself with creative people. Be generous with those who know less than you and gracious with those who know more.

What’s one thing you wish you knew when you started your career? How to cook a proper meal.
Illustrators Gina Triplett and Matt Curtius work collaboratively. They've completed assignments for clients that have included Macy's, American Express, Urban Outfitter, and Warner Brothers. Their illustrations have been recognized by American Illustration, The Society of Illustrators and Communication Arts and their art has been exhibited in a number of galleries in this country, and a few abroad. They live in Philadelphia where Matt teaches illustration at The University of the Arts.
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